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Which Dual Sport?

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Hello everyone. I'm brand new here and really need advice. I just sold my 03' Kawasaki Concours because I want to ride on and off road and I also want to ride with my kids at the local off-road park. I will use the bike for everything-commuting through town, trips to the mountains (with some freeway blasts), and taking on camping trips (I have a camper with a front deck for carrying bikes or ATV's). My concern is the tradeoff between being rideable on the freeway versus being easy enough to handle on easy to moderate off road rides. I'm also not very tall (5'9", 180#'s), and bikes like the DRZ400 seem too tall. I'm leaning towards either the DR650 or a smaller bike like the new XT250 or crf230L, but I'm worried that coming from a fairly high powered bike I might get bored quckly with the smaller bikes. Is there an ideal bike for me or will I have to make compromises??

thanks,

dave

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as long your not getting into real heavy scub, a DR-Z 400 should be a good bike, excellent on road while still being decent off road, and will last, the new yamaha WR250R also deserves a mention, around as powerful as the DR-Z, still very reliable, fuel injected, better suspention and can cruise easily on the highway an d ride easy on trails due to it's wide ratio gearbox, think of a DRZ engine in an MX frame and suspention with fuel injection and theres your WR250R basically.

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Are you wanting to get a bike that comes from the factory with a plate ( KTM 450 EXC or 530 EXC, or the CRF230L, etc) or are you open to buying something ( Like the above mentioned WR250, or CRF250X, etc.) and doing the necessary conversions your state requires for a dual sport conversion. If you are open to the latter, it would give you lots more options on bikes. Go to your DMV and find out what is required for converting a dirt bike for dual sport use, and then find a bike that suits what you want, make the necessary conversions and presto... A dirt bike that can go anywhere you want it to... And as my 2 cents, I would check into the Honda XR 250/400 line. Super reliable bikes, with plenty of mods available to make it as mild or wild as you like.

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Husky TE610. It will do everything you mentioned, and doesn't need mods to do it.:thumbsup:

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From what I've read, I think california has put the brakes on dual sport conversions, so I will need a plated bike. There would be a lot more options if I could do this.

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KLR650. Good enough for the Marine Corps. Good enough for you.

They WILL go in surprisingly tight and nasty single track trails. They go. Not well, but they go. They're not a dirt bike but are way more comfortable on the road.

Add full DOT knobbies and a skid plate. Stiffen up the springs and watch out!!!

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Thanks for the advice. I was actually leaning more to the DR650 because it's lighter than the KLR, and the seat is lower. I looked at a '94 model and it was cheap but very beaten up. I may look at new ones if I can't find a clean used one near me.

The Husky TE610 looks awesome but it may be hard to find around here (SF bay area), and it's bit expensive. This is going to be a tough decision!!!

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If you are looking for a used bike, consider a used XR line... XR650s are killer, and their little brother the XR400 is a great bike too... You can also find WR's and DRZ's used and street legal as well. If you are looking to use a bike on the trails, these bikes will do you a lot better. Just make sure the conversion was done pre Jan 04...

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Hello everyone. I'm brand new here and really need advice. I just sold my 03' Kawasaki Concours because I want to ride on and off road and I also want to ride with my kids at the local off-road park. I will use the bike for everything-commuting through town, trips to the mountains (with some freeway blasts), and taking on camping trips (I have a camper with a front deck for carrying bikes or ATV's). My concern is the tradeoff between being rideable on the freeway versus being easy enough to handle on easy to moderate off road rides. I'm also not very tall (5'9", 180#'s), and bikes like the DRZ400 seem too tall. I'm leaning towards either the DR650 or a smaller bike like the new XT250 or crf230L, but I'm worried that coming from a fairly high powered bike I might get bored quckly with the smaller bikes. Is there an ideal bike for me or will I have to make compromises??

thanks,

dave

Iride a lowered klr 650 its sweet

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Good Times Motorsports in Sacramento sells Husky's as well. The TE610 does look like a seriously cool dualsport and seems to be as close to a 50/50 bike as anything. I'm very interested in checking out the WR250R when it finally hits the dealerships around here as well. The KTM's and the Husky TE450/510 look like seriously awesome machines, but I wonder how much of a pain they'd be to live with if ridden 500 - 700 miles a month on the street. It seems like you'd be having to do valve checks and other maintenance pretty much every other week, which would get old for me REALLY quickly. Is that accurate or can they go a lot longer between valve checks/adjustments than that?

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What do you think of the KTM 450 EXC? Its street legal and 20 to 30 lbs lighter than the 530. I am looking at the 450 but am wondering how it compares to the XC series and whether its powerful enough for hard trail use and playing on some tracks.

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Ok-I think I've narrowed it down to the DR-Z400 or the DR650, mostly due to price and convienience of having a local suzuki dealer. When I ride on the street, I like to have the advantage in acceleration over the cages. Can someone who has ridden both bikes tell me which bike is quicker off the line and which bike would be better for traffic negotiation. I wish I could test ride each bike, but dealers won't allow this.

thanks again-this forum has been very helpful!

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i am a die hard kawasaki fan but the truth is the klr650 is a slug... i havn't rode the new and improved model but the old version was not quick, not even after piping and rejetting it... i was very dissapointed and traded it back in.

I would go with the DRZ before I would buy the KLR again.

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What do you think of the KTM 450 EXC? Its street legal and 20 to 30 lbs lighter than the 530. I am looking at the 450 but am wondering how it compares to the XC series and whether its powerful enough for hard trail use and playing on some tracks.

Note that the '08 450 EXC and the 530 EXC are the same weight; likewise with the XC-W series. The E-start only double overhead cam XC-F's are about 6 lbs lighter than the XC-W's according to the Apr issue of Dirt Bike. The same article shows the actual weight of the KTM 450 XC-W at 249 lbs which is from 9-14 lbs lighter than comparable Japanese bikes and 2 lbs under the Husaberg. The XC-W's are the same as the EXC's sans 'street legal' stuff.

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